A couple of weeks ago, some LightSquared creditors who may or may not be Dish Network chairman Charlie Ergen but who definitely want Charlie Ergen to buy LightSquared got someone who doesn't like Charlie Ergenkicked off the committee that will consider Charlie Ergen's bid. Well, some people who don't like Charlie Ergen but own a few shares in his company now want a couple of people who do like Charlie Ergen thrown off of Dish's committee handling the bid for LightSquared, for the same reason that Charlie Ergen or Charlie Ergen's allies wanted the person who doesn't like Charlie Ergen off the LightSquared committee. And none of them are Phil Falcone! Got it?
Shareholders suing the satellite-television company over its handling of an offer for LightSquared Inc. argue that two directors appointed by Dish to a committee to evaluate the merits of that lawsuit have close ties to Mr. Ergen and the company, according to court documents filed on Friday.
The filing said one director, Tom Ortolf, has a daughter who works at Dish; the other, George Brokaw, chose Mr. Ergen's wife, Cantey Ergen—a Dish director named in the shareholder suit—to be the godmother of his son, according to the documents, which were filed in Clark County, Nevada. Those relationships could compromise their independence in the matter, the shareholders alleged….
The dispute over the two directors' roles is the latest dustup over Dish's bid for LightSquared. The Wall Street Journal, citing people familiar with the situation, reported in August that a Dish director resigned in July amid an internal disagreement over the company's handling of the LightSquared bid. The proposed deal also has spawned a lawsuit against Dish from LightSquared's biggest backer, Harbinger Capital Partners.
Dish formed the committee last month after the shareholder, the Jacksonville, Fla., Police and Fire Pension Fund, sued the company and its directors over their handling of the bid.